I have been working with James Brenner Sculpture on various projects. For this project we have designed and developed a corten steel, aluminum, and glass dragonfly to be installed in Austin Texas. All of this work is done in Rhino, constructed in 3d, deconstructed to be plasma cut. Here are some images of the work in progress.
University of Minnesota College of Design
School of Architecture, ARCH3250
Spring Semester 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2014
Professor: Aaron Marx
This BDA workshop will explore memorialization and the potential of digital modeling in the architectural design process. Marcel Proust’s statement captures the power of memory on our perception of space and emphasizes the fact that human experience offers an abundant approach to the question of the nature of architecture and its role in the making of the world.
This workshop will ask students to create and represent digital models in relationship to a specific memory or event. Related to the idea of poetic analogy, students will explore how models can be used as a process of visualizing, thinking, and contemplating.
Looking to examples of memorials, real and imagined, students will be asked to speculate on the role of memory in architectural design, and select a memorial for research and study during the workshop. There will be a series of lessons on the basic concepts of digital modeling and rendering, and students will be expected to produce a model and represent it in relationship to memorialization.
MI-TGW: A social media device
Mass Information and the Temporal Graffiti of War:
A social media device, exploring of the ideology of Purple Hearts
A collaboration with Minneapolis Art on Wheels this project was an opportunity to influence society and culture in fantastic ways. Through major exposure to the masses this work sought to send an inspirational and motivational message about peace and understanding, while providing ‘real’ information to society. My experience with architecture, graffiti, computers, 3D modeling, rendering, and mathematics helped to develop social, technical, and artistic uses for advancing technology.
One primary goal was to develop software that searches for anti-war information and displays that information graphically, through projections, onto buildings and environments. Purple hearts were initial subject matter — exploring the secret counting and documentation of those injured and killed in the Iraq war. How is this medal connected to the Presidents, can we give the public an accurate idea of what it means to have a Purple Heart, and in doing so make apparent the realities of war? This software was intended to find a way to represent social questions through temporal, legal graffiti that is generated from real world data collection.
The goal of this project was to inform, educate, and inspire the communities in Minneapolis, MN. Although the images projected were not always analytically understood, their message was expressed with scale and motion. Some questions I asked were: What would the affect of six million beating hearts have, if projected onto a skyscraper near a highly traveled freeway? How could up-to-date, hard-to-find information be obtained and graphically displayed? What kind of time is inherent in this process, and are we capable of representing such information graphically?
New World Symphony – Digital Design and Fabrication
Working with Radius Track I helped to digitally fabricated light gauge framing for Frank Gehry’s New World Symphony. Using Rhino, we deconstructed three-dimensional models and develop bending procedures and specifications for the construction and fabrication of complex multi-dimensional curved architectural surfaces. This project required extensive knowledge of geometry, material limits, and digital fabrication procedures.
Making the Best of It is a series of regionally site-specific food and art installations and community meals that feature a climate-change enabled (and often unwanted) edible species. People are engaged in tastings and conversation about the risks of climate chaos, our business-as-usual food system, and the short term food innovations at our disposal.
In Minnesota, Making the Best of It: Dandelion includes a team of orators, community guides, and food servers help participants explore climate change through dandelions!
This web zine provides examples of making the best of it, as our public participatory projects try to approach and question the ways in which food, behavior, and perception affect our relationships to climate change.
Valentine Cadieux, Aaron Marx, Sarah Petersen and Marina Zurkow
Commissioned by Northern Lights.mn
Presented as part of Northern Spark: Climate Chaos | Climate Rising, 2016-2017
I have been making colorful abstract drawings and paintings for about 15 years. I use it as a way to explore aesthetic questions, consider composition, find new color relationships, understand pure formal speculation, experiment with various textures, and express emotion through the act of making. Often they are large scale, which allows for a unique expression through the physicality of the body and the translation of large gestures into marks. These paintings are from 2015 and were shown at Sen Yai Sen Lek.
An artist-led architecture for urban self-reliance.
A Proposal for Creative City Challenge 2016
Team: Aaron Marx, Lucas Alm, Sarah Nassif, Jake Nassif, Paul Schmelzer
STATEMENT OF INTEREST
Self-reliance and connection to the land are common threads in the history of this place—from pre-settlement societies to European farmers to the early industrial era that harnessed the bounty of the land.
But modern living is erasing so much land-based knowledge and skills, as well as our identity as growers, savers, and rugged survivors. We are now citizens of the retail-financial-corporate complex, more oriented to stadiums than seedbeds. Push too hard on our modern assumptions and they crumble like an interstate bridge. American cities are one major security breach or climate event away from disaster.
Renewing our self-reliance—and our relationships with each other—is increasingly a matter of self-preservation. We are (again) a diverse population of people struggling to make a home together in a challenging place, with many mouths to feed and little more than our collective wits to protect us. What actions will we take to prepare? We believe the Creative City Challenge—with its goals of promoting health, community connection, and vital exchange through art in the city’s center—is the perfect vehicle to address this question.
Artists, as usual, can show the way. For decades Minneapolis makers, growers, architects, technologists, and other creative toilers have been preserving knowledge and skills—and forging new ones—outside the mainstream cultural conversation. From urban farming and sustainable architecture to alternative transportation and homemade textiles, our artists know how to make it for themselves.
This summer in the center of the city, we want to amplify their voices and widely share their knowledge. We call it Self-Made Mpls: an iconic complex, part garden, part workshop, part classroom, part prototype, where citizens and visitors can rediscover together what we’re capable of.
Our team of two architects, two writers, and a community artist will create an iconic destination for experts to share self-reliant skills and for the public to understand and practice them.
Self-Made Mpls is a proposal for an iconic energy generating windmill and accompanying garden space that transforms into a community gathering space for sharing knowledge and learning about sustainable living. The components of this project include:
Garden: A series of raised boxes will grow an assortment of foods ideal for the local climate, with the produce used in workshops and in a final public meal. Some beds will grow plants chosen to clean urban air and soil, while others will host a pollinator-friendly garden to help regenerate the ecosystem.
Tower windmill: A powerful beacon that draws people to the project stands as a primary axis and symbol for our endeavor. Lights powered by a mix of wind and solar energy will illuminate the tower and the structure below, while an iconic weather vane inspired by Leonardo’s helicopter—a symbol of human ingenuity—will top the tower.
Meeting space: The base of the tower will serve as a welcoming convening space for community events, a key aspect of the project. Wall panels, closed at night to store garden tools and event materials, will open to create a canopied environment for meetings and scheduled events. Inside the structure will be tables, seating, and a resource library, including key books for education and inspiration. The project’s concluding event will be a public feast made with food grown on site in the gardens.
Workshops: A key aim of the project is to demystify the practices of self-reliance. To this end, we will invite artists and experts to the project site weekly or bi-weekly to lead workshops where the public can learn practical skills. These contributors will be paid for their time as appropriate. Programming could include:
Fermentation, Canning, Gardening, Foraging, Solar/wind energy, Bike maintenance, Rain collection, Small-scale building, Zine-making, Knitting, Food preparation, Native astrology, Flint knapping, Wilderness survival for kids
Farmers Market: Several times over the course of the project we’ll partner with Frogtown Farm or local Hmong farmers to host a pop-up produce market on the grounds. This could be done in conjunction with a workshop such as pickling when cucumbers are in season.
Publication: To ensure that the knowledge shared in Self-Made Mpls is useful long-term, we will produce a zine or newsletter that chronicles learning and resources. Copies of the publication will available free to participants and visitors late in the project. We intend to pay for the creation of this publication through a separate grant.
How do we address the theme of CCC 2016?
We believe Self-Made Mpls represents the best of our city and region, embodied by people passionate about their ideas and eager to collaborate. This is the Minneapolis people outside the artist and maker community rarely sees: bubbling over with ingenuity and socially- and environmentally-conscious activity. The site also makes a striking visual statement. The incongruous presence of a large garden and windmill downtown will draw in visitors and locals.
How do we meet the city’s goals?
Adds character to the city by creating a destination that literally enhances the health and enriches the lives of Minneapolis residents. Every visitor takes away awareness, connections, and skills they can apply to living self-sufficiently.
Helps recognize Minneapolis as a regional center for excellence in architecture, urban design and the arts. Our architect-designed intervention will be an engaging destination that puts a variety of local ingenuity on magnificent display.
Enhances community identity and sense of place in the MCC plaza and contributes to community vitality through programming that brings people together to grow, learn, share, and survive.
River Mural and Pollinator Rain Barrels (Aug. 2016) was a public art workshop with Public Art Saint Paul making a 10′ x 4′ river mural on canvas and painting two rain barrels with pollinators to be used as garden collection units.
A review of the show can be found here.
This project or investigation has fallen under the broad framework titled “Builders of the Universe,” based on a historical text of the same name. It evolved out of my own struggle to understand the contradiction between faith and reason. For me, science has continued to inspire a deeper connection to being; for example, the second law of thermodynamics in fact shows us that a cloud never dies.
*This video was in the City Pages Top Music Videos, it was part of a large scale public projection at the Northrop.
Builders of the Universe is artistic exploration and urban intervention considering the role of memory on the perception of space and our place in the cosmos. By considering the non-linear shifts in our understanding of the universe through a study of Einstein’s Builders of the Universe, this project considers the significant paradigm shifts in science over the course of history, and asks questions about the nature of our relationship with the metaphysical nature of the universe. Some questions this work addresses are: How do shifts in our understanding of the universe help us to come to terms with the ever increasing demand for technology in art and architectural design? What can we learn about memory in the built environment by examining the most prevalent shifts in science and the construction of the astronomic world? How has the art and science of creative practice changed over time?
The physical manifestation of this project will begin with the concept of progress. Related to the idea of poetic analogy, this project will explore how physical, digital, and full size models can be used as a process of visualizing, thinking, and contemplating. Starting with Richard Pousette-Dart’s “process” work, where he documented the transformation of his painting Cathedral, this project will attempt to bring form to, and push the boundaries of, abstraction in three-dimensional form. It will be accomplished through a series of public art interventions, collaborative art making exercises, and a gallery installation – consisting of projections, environmental sensors, and energy parasites.
The goals of this project are to explore the relationship between artistic process, digital technology, and representational abstraction in 3d form and to develop compelling uses for new technology in a contemporary public and media art practice. There are many questions to be considered in this process: How can the traditional modes of making and the artistic transformation found in Pousette-Dart’s painting practice be applied to a technological, digital art practice? In what ways can digital art and a systematic documentation processes help to bridge the gap between science and art? How can digital technology and media art inform questions about memory in the built environment? And finally, can sustainability and source created energy be used to build awe inspiring interactive environments?